GeisTreich – Geisenheim Transfer Program for Biodiverse and Multifunctional Viticulture

The research project will develop a transfer program for Geisenheim University (HGU) that will strengthen biodiverse and multifunctional viticulture in the Rheingau. Together with regional actors, new and innovative formats of knowledge transfer will be used to develop solution strategies for a much needed system change in agriculture. Here, viticulture and the cultural landscape shaped by it is going to serve as an example. That way, the HGU will significantly expand its role as a regional and supra-regional driver of innovation for the development of sustainable cultivation systems and diverse, attractive cultural landscapes. In addition, the project aims to contribute to the further development of existing transfer structures and processes at university level.

Research approach

ISOE is a project partner of HGU and cooperates with it on both strategic and conceptual levels in an advisory and operational capacity. ISOE’s task is to further develop existing transfer structures and processes in close cooperation with HGU. The aim is to broaden the transfer perspective as follows The project team is pursuing the implementation of a research-based knowledge transfer that views the target groups of this transfer equally as knowledge recipients, knowledge carriers and idea providers. So, on the one hand scientific knowledge can be applied and on the other hand questions and problems, but also the knowledge needs of the target groups, can be fed into research. 

Another goal of the project is to better understand and strengthen the effects of the transfer measures through an accompanying impact-oriented evaluation. Therefore, the project critically examines the topic of intended effects of the HGU research and the transfer throughout the entire process. In close cooperation with HGU, ISOE is in charge of this task. In this context, the direct learning and network effects that are central to knowledge transfer are examined. In addition, indirect social effects are also made visible by the accompanying evaluation and can be used for communication and, in the sense of a formative evaluation, for adjustments in the course of the project.


The cultural landscapes that have been shaped by viticulture are facing major transformative processes: Climate change and biodiversity loss are already having a massive impact on the appearance and yield security in these regions. Therefore, scientific findings on sustainable viticulture are essential. Research institutions have already developed potentials for knowledge transfer. The GeisTreich transfer project is intended to enable these potentials, which have not yet been fully exploited, to be implemented in a targeted manner in a given region and thus put into practice. According to the funding line, the transformative innovation potential of applied research universities is thus used in the sense of sustainable regional development. Therefore, central actors (such as winegrowers, employees in tourism or landscape protection) are brought together to work out possible solutions that are specifically tailored to a specific region in dialogue with research institutions. 

Research and project partners

HGU Geisenheim University (project lead)


The project “GeisTreich – Geisenheim Transfer Program for Biodiverse and Multifunctional Viticulture” is being funded in the second funding round by the federal states’ initiative “Innovative University” launched by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).


2023/01 – 2027/12